Found an article on the flumc.org website concerning Asian-Americans in our Conference and below is the relevant portion.
May 30, 2017
By Kari C. Barlow | FLUMC
Editor’s Note: Across the Florida Conference, numerous churches are blessed with the membership of Asian-American Christians from a variety of countries including Vietnam, Cambodia, South Korea, Japan and China. From language to cuisine to different styles of worship, their presence enriches a diverse family bound together by Christ. Below are a few of their stories.
Giving back to America
When Joseph Kim, pastor of Riverview United Methodist Church in Ormond Beach, looks back on his life, he clearly sees God’s handiwork. “I can say all this is God’s grace, God’s amazing grace,” he said. “I had no clue what I was going to be, but God knew.”
Growing up in Seoul, South Korea, he was not raised in a religious household, though his mother and grandmother attended a Buddhist temple. But he was familiar with Christianity because he had Christian friends who were continually inviting him to camp activities and church services. When an 18-year-old Joseph and his family immigrated to the Bronx, New York, in 1988, he gravitated to those same kinds of children—Korean teenagers with an active Christian faith.
“They would go to the beach to play basketball but you had to go to the prayer meeting first, so I would go because I wanted to make friends,” he said. A few years later, while in college at Stony Brook University in Long Island, he became a believer during a Campus Crusade for Christ event.
“God sent me a lot of Christian friends,” said Joseph, who went on to serve in the U.S. Army and eventually graduated from Asbury Theological Seminary.
Years later, after serving at multiple Korean-speaking churches, he felt called to a new challenge and requested an appointment at an Anglo congregation. “This country has been a blessing to me, and I wanted to be a blessing,” Kim said.
His request was granted, and today he and his wife Grace and their two children—13-year-old Esther and 10-year-old Samuel—are celebrating seven years at Riverview UMC.
“Our congregation is very accepting,” he said of the predominantly white church. “I sing in the choir and there are several times I sing in the Korean language. They love it—not that I am a great singer—but it’s different, and they told me they feel the presence of God even if they don’t understand.”
Starting in Jul,y, Cokesbury UMC will have a new Pastor. Pastor CJ is stepping down as Pastor for health reasons.
Pastor Scott and his family will be moving to Davie United Methodist Church.
The new Pastor will be Joseph Kim. Pastor Kim will be joined by his wife Grace and daughter and son, Esther, & Samuel
Here is a word of greeting from Pastor Joseph:
My family and I want to let you know how excited we are to be joining this wonderful ministry. We look forward to worship our God, grow in His grace, and serve the community together in the City of Margate and the world. I'd like express our deepest gratitude to Rev. Dr. C.J. Walter, my wonderful predecessor for her faithful services. She has already been a great help in many ways!
I will be so honored to be your pastor and look forward to getting to know you. My family and I thank all of you in advance for accepting us as part of Cokesbury United Methodist Church. We will do our best to finish our current ministry faithfully since that is the only way to start our new faith journey well. God bless you!
Love in Christ,
Joseph, Grace, Esther, & Samuel